Friday, April 8, 2011

Book Review and Movie Review: Wise Man's Fear, and Good Food

The Wise Man's Fear (The Kingkiller Chronicle, #2)The Wise Man's Fear by Patrick Rothfuss

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

The Name of the Wind was one of the biggest things to happen in fantasy in recent years, making a huge splash on the scene, and propelling Patrick Rothfuss from newcomer to fantasy star. But you have to sort of wonder anytime an author has a breakout book--will he be able to do it again? After all, often with first books, the author has had years (sometimes even decades) to work on that one book. There are such things as one hit wonders, and I always worry that the first book in a series will then go on to pull a Matrix, with each subsequent book just proving that the lightning captured in the first was just a fluke.

So. Wise Man's Fear--the second book in Rothfuss's series. Would it be Name of the Wind: Revolutions, or The Name of the Wind Strikes Back?

I'm ecstatic and relieved to be able to report that it's a fantastic read. Easily as good as the first--likely better. It's books like these that bring new fans to the genre. It's got all the hallmarks of a great epic fantasy: engrossing characters, fully-realized world, complicated politics and intrigue, awesome magic system. The works.

Really the only question to ask yourself is what you thought of Book One. If you loved it, read on. If you didn't . . . we can't be friends anymore. :-) If you haven't read it yet, then what are you waiting for? It really is that good.

It's available in our Discoveries collection this month.

And secondly, we'll be showing a film next week as part of our On Our Minds programming this year. We've been looking at a variety of movies focused on the food industry, and this time up we have Good Food, a documentary focused on how food growers in the Pacific Northwest are pioneering efforts to return the food industry to a smaller farms model. While it lacks a centralized story--it's more of a collection of anecdotes about individual efforts, all of which share the same general topic--it does an excellent job of illustrating the variety of approaches available today to growing food locally and organically. If you're interested in seeing what other options are out there (beyond Big Agriculture and humongous farms), then come on out on Tuesday to the Lincoln Auditorium at 7pm to check it out.

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